2018 Beaune – a large blind tasting

Update 31.5.2021(4.5.2021)billn

2018 Beaune 1er Crus
Tasted in Beaune, 02 March 2021

I find it’s too easy to let the worst of a particular vintage colour your impressions of a vintage as a whole – call it a lasting caricature of a vintage.

Because I usually finish my tour of the new wines of the Côte d’Or with the Côte de Nuits, my impression of the wines from there can potentially dominate my thoughts on the vintage in general – and what a poor year Chambolle (for instance) had in 2018 with as much as 50% of the wines deeply coloured and often volatile at the end of 2020. I remembered significantly less of such excesses in the Côte de Beaune but thought it worth challenging my ageing memory…

The production volumes in 2018 were relatively high – if below the level of the 2017 reds – and maybe this was positive for the wines. There is no lack of concentration but perhaps this helped a little to dilute the excesses of the weather that were certainly visible in some communes from the Côte de Nuits in 2018.

Beaune production volumes 2015-2019
Volumes in hectoliters, courtesy the BIVB

Here, tasted blind in Beaune 02 March 2021 were 108 samples of Beaune 1er Cru – including a decent selection of whites too. The wines were served as big mix, not by climat, though it would be interesting to see if certain 1ers would come to the fore more often. I had less interest in which reds were sealed with DIAM but for whites, I consider it an important factor for wine buying so noted in each case…

Summarising the winners…

First things first; it’s a long time since I experienced so many corked wines – 5 from 108 bottles – this is not the only recent instance. A statistical ‘blip’ or are we returning to the bad old days of 1995-2005? None of the corked bottles were marginal, they were all real stinkers. Last November I tasted 170 Beaujolais Nouveau and met no instances of tainted wine – you are paying much more here!

A for the wines, the reds acquitted themselves wonderfully well. 2018 has many detractors – myself included – but that’s largely for wines of the Côte de Nuits where you have to be much more selective than in the Côte de Beaune. The Beaune reds were, obviously, ripe in style – how could they not be from 2018(?) – but they were also balanced, well-textured and largely delicious wines – they will easily keep for 20 years, no problem, if that’s your wish. From my chosen wines, it seems clear that I like some deftly used stems, though some in my list are also completely destemmed.

The whites were generally well-balanced too – though some will certainly improve in that respect as they lose their ‘puppy-fat‘ of fruit. The main issue on this tasting day was quite an anonymous style to many of the wines – more a tasty chardonnay style than tasty wines of Burgundy.

The reds
12 simply great wines, worthy of a special search, from 90 tasted. Listed in the order they were tasted:
2018 Joseph Drouhin, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
2018 Saint Marc, Beaune 1er Clos des Avaux
2018 Sophie Joigneaux, Beaune 1er Blanches Fleurs
2018 Albert Bichot, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
2018 des Croix, Beaune 1er Cent Vignes – my wine of the tasting
2018 Aurelie Berthod, Beaune 1er Belissand
2018 des Croix, Beaune 1er Pertuisots
2018 du Pavillon, Beaune 1er Bressandes
2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
2018 Clos la Chapelle, Beaune 1er Champs Pimont
2018 des Croix, Beaune 1er Bressandes

The whites
Just one wine worth a special search from the 18 tasted:
2018 Clos de la Chapelle, Beaune 1er Reversées

First, the reds…

Listed in tasting order:

2018 Bouchard Père et Fils, Beaune 1er Marconnets
Plebty of colour. Hmm, very lovely deep fruit with a fresh herb accent – that’s a fine invitation. Mouth-filling, a base of tannic grain, but ripe and an very delicious. That’s an excellent start – with obvious finishing class here…

2018 Parent, Beaune 1er Les Epenotes
Again, lots of colour. Less depth to the fruit aroma but with a similarly airy, fresh-herbed, complexity. Fresh, more direct, a trace of oak in these flavours too – but not overdone, just to wait for. Fine finishing again – silkier texture for this wine – with less visible tannin.

2018 Joseph Drouhin, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Lots of colour again. Here a floral extra to the nose and a little extra darker fruit too. Full, energetic, more structural wine – I love this energy – certainly for keeping longer. Floral in the finishing flavours too. A suggestion of the rustic but a great crescendo of flavour too, also a little oak complexity here today – bravo.

2018 Chanson Père et Fils, Beaune 1er Clos du Roi
Faintly more modest colour. A narrower nose, redder fruit, faintly with higher tones too – a little whole cluster? Wide over the palate, extra fresh here too – a framing with tannin but no grain. Not the volume of some other wines but here is an absorbing and delicious finish, certainly not the most powerful.

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Les Teurons
Plenty of colur again. Not a fully open nose, but with a very nice style and modest floral component too. Wide, supple, fresh, accommodating, deliciously flavoured. That’s a lovey wine. Very yum!

It’s already apparent that any ‘caricatures’ that persist in my brain of wines with roast fruit in 2018, etcetera, don’t belong in Beaune; what a great start, generous, ripe but not over-ripe…

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
Generous colour again. A slightly reductive wine. Swirling brings notes of coffee and interest – not that much in the way of fruit. Supple, wide, faintly tannic – though completely ripe – generously flavoured too – very fruity, tasty, über-delicious wine. Excellent, maybe great…

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Cent Vignes
Extra freshness in the width, less overt depth of aroma. Big in the mouth, freshness, cool-fruit energy, depth and texture to this flavour too – long finishing, never fat or too ripe. Excellent wine again.

2018 Françoise André, Beaune 1er Les Reverses
A nose that starts compact but responds to swirling with plenty of energy – perhaps a subtle reduction in here. Fresher, cool fruit again, less overt ripeness. Certainly mouth-watering and with a delicious slightly more crunchy-fruit style vs the majority. A faint dryness in the finish that won’t last long. Cooler-styled, very tasty wine with a small suggestion of finishing barrel…

2018 Henri Cauvard, Beaune 1er Pertuisots
Extra freshness once more, here with a more floral aspect. Plenty of flavour energy here – a blend of floral and fruit. Super, almost chewy fruit extract in the middle and finishing flavour. That’s another super wine…

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Bressandes
A little extra colour. A more compact nose – there’s freshness but a certain, less ripe, tightness. Deeply flavoured, lots of sucrosity. A wine that opens and opens with ever-more interest – from a very modest start a great finish…

2018 Saint Marc, Beaune 1er Clos des Avaux
A faint reduction but from this grows a purity of red fruit that no previous wine compares with – that’s a great start. Silky, direct – such great texture despite growing base of tannin – virtually grainless. There’s some barrel here but modestly so. A long, tactile finish. A wine of great parts – if it all comes together bravo.
2018 Sophie Joigneaux, Beaune 1er Blanches Fleurs
A little more modesty to the colour here. Another nose with flashes of brilliance – here with beautiful floral energy – and more consistently perfumed than the previous wine. Nice attack – open wine but with plenty of barrel in this flavour. A super and expanding finish though. Probably a great Beaune – but given the oak in the middle flavours, I wouldn’t touch another for 5 years…

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Lots of colour. A little coffee-oak style at the base, a nose with good energy and a certain freshness too. Filling the mouth with flavour and ripe tannin – there’s hardly anything dry here. Width and chewy depth in the finishing flavour. Long too – Not a fully extroverted wine but there’s lots to find and enjoy here – tasty wine.

2018 Château de Meausault, Beaune 1er Cru
A slightly pungent nose – perfumed – but the perfume of an old aunt. Fresh, rather direct wine, in the context of 2018 less ripe. Easy-going tasty flavour on the palate – but with plenty of barrel references. Chewy finishing with a little tannin. Good wine.

2018 Henri Cauvard, Beaune 1er Les Teurons
Darker colour. An airy, redder-fruited nose – but of no particular distinction. Lots of mouth-watering freshness in this case and a litte extra depth of finishing flavour. The best part is the finish with plenty of energy and a little of the structure.

2018 Jaffelin, Beaune 1er Sur Les Grèves Clos St.Anne
The palest colour so far. A round depth of aroma and a growing vibrance of red energy – but a modest invitation. Wide and fresh over the palate – I’m really enjoying the energy here. The finish is long though of modest intensity – a word that sums up this wine – modest – though a tasty wine all the same.

2018 Henri Cauvard, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
You need to work the glass to extract the interesting perfumes – but it works – still, I have a slightly vegetal aspect here too. In the mouth, cool, direct, perfumed fruit. Framed with fine, ripe tannin – no dryness in the flavour though a little remains on the tongue in the finish. That’s still a very good wine.

2018 Marchand-Tawse, Beaune 1er Tuvillains
A more compact nose today – modestly darker fruited. Nice shape in the mouth, a growing intensity of darker-fruit flavour too. Long and mouth-watering. There’s concentration here – I’d be waiting a few years to harvest these, but I think more than very good wine.

2018 Albert Bichot, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
That’s a lovely nose – open, vibrant, red-fruited – super. Driving, energetic, so mouth-watering with a growing intensity – there’s tannin but as an anectdote. Long finishing. Keep as long as like or drink today – bravo!
2018 des Croix, Beaune 1er Cent Vignes
A deeply perfumed wine – full of forward whole-cluster notes – so finely executed – wow! On the palate – all energy no density – but plenty of intensity. In truth, the whole-cluster impression is rather strong here – finely done as it is – so I’d wait 5 years or so before returning – but without a shadow of a doubt, this is great, great wine – so wonderfully perfumed.

2018 Michel Arcelain, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
Deep and a little more extracted aroma – darker fruit, not particularly floral. Deep, textural, complex, impressively flavoured, very saline. Too much? Probably not with a little cellar patience – wait 5 years again but for (yet) another reason…

2018 JC Boisset, Beaune 1er Les Avaux
A nose that tries to be a blend of the previous two – depth, extraction but a pretty note of florals too – quite good. The palate is better than the nose – wide, deliciously finishing with open, attractive fruit. That’s an excellent Beaune.

2018 Pascal Prunier Bonheur, Beaune 1er Les Sizies
Not my favourite aroma profile but it’s full and red-fruited. In the mouth, the fruit is also red but much nicer, mouth-watering, long – the finish resembling the nose a little. Not my style.

2018 François Charles & Fils, Beaune 1er Boucherottes
Again airy style to this darker-red fruit – that’s very attractive. Mouth-filling – plenty of fresh energy, ripe and layered fruit in the middle. Plenty of structure in the finish but hardly anything dry. That’s a very good Beaune!

2018 Château de Meausault, Beaune 1er Les Fèves
Deep but some purity of higher aromas too – that’s a very lovely nose. A width of flavour underpinned with a texture of tannin but hardly any grain. The oak flavour is visible but not dominating. Lots of finishing depth to this flavour – it will need time, but it’s another excellent wine…

2018 Bouchard Aine, Beaune 1er Les Marconnets
Second bottle, the first was corked.
This has a warm and attractive red-fruited roundness of aroma. Mouth-filling, and nicely textured before a little tannin starts to frame the wine in a more velvet style. Finishing narrow but long – good wine, a very good finish…

2018 Bonnardot, Beaune 1er Belissand
Fresh and energetic, makes a great impression with the fresh dark fruit. Mouth-filling, lots of good energy, depth of flavour. That’s a tasty and mouth-watering wine – very good wine…

2018 François Charles & Fils, Beaune 1er Epenotes
An easy and open nose with a width of nice red fruit. Fresh and energetically red-fruited. Mouth-filling again – lots of freshness and very good energy here. The finish is again modest in volume but far from modest in length – very fine.

2018 Aurelie Berthod, Beaune 1er Belissand
Heavy bottle and darkly coloured. A deep and vibrant nose – that’s actually very inviting. Vibrant wine, direct in flavour, dark-red fruit. Great purity of finishing flavour despite a little oak – for keeping but a great wine…

2018 Jean-Michel Giboulot, Beaune 1er Clos du Roi
A particular nose – I don’t say bad, but it’s almost a salty style of nose – Chablis-style from Beaune. Mouth-filling wide, good energy, again saline in style.
Bottle 2: Less flagrant, but a little in the same style. Mouth-filling, cool-fruited, saline long but also way better wine.

2018 des Croix, Beaune 1er Pertuisots
Another nose of fine and pure whole-cluster perfume – not as forward as the previous D.Croix but with the same esprit. A driving energy – more open – structural but in shape, nothing hard. Long finishing – another haunting wine, but I have a small preference for the Cent Vignes so far! Bravo!
2018 du Pavillon, Beaune 1er Bressandes
Open, faintly coffee impression, quite perfumed too – that’s lovely. Very silky wide, good open wine with energy. Red-fruited and very tasty. Deliciously finishing – that’s a great wine – I love!

2018 Château de Santenay, Beaune 1er Montée Rouge
Ooh – that’s a lovely nose – deep, pure darker-fruited – yes! Lots of energy in the mouth – freshness, like the nose but with darker fruit. I love the finishing intensity of flavour here. Keep for 2 or 3 years in your cellar, but I find this excellent…

2018 Michel Gay, Beaune 1er Coucherias
Red and floral – short and sweet – lovely. Mouth-filling with plenty of energy, a little barrel in the depth of flavour. Generously but mouth-wateringly flavoured wine. I also think this excellent.

2018 Bitouzet-Prieur, Beaune 1er Cent Vignes
There’s a faint herb mixed with the red fruit here – not the greatest invitation to start – but aeration adds complexity and a little impression of whole clusters, this wine is only warming up. Sleek, fresh, structural but with super mouth-watering flavour. The palate, like the nose, starting a little meagre but growing and growing – I think a great cellar candidate – it should be an excellent wine.

2018 Henri Cauvard, Beaune 1er Cent Vignes
Easy red fruit aroma. Nice shape in the mouth, the fruits style just a little jammy but this is a tasty wine that finishes very well. Good wine

2018 Louis Latour, Beaune 1er Perrières
A nose with more than a suggestion of reduction – not instantly appealing. Mouth-filling, nicely texured – but too reductive. I’ll return after an hour – I shook the bottle and took out a lot of CO2. On returning, still a suggestion of reduction, but less – red fruit too. Structural, darker flavours. I like the lip-smacking style and flavour of this wine – but if you have to open one now, then decant at least a couple of hours before you plan to drink

2018 Meurgey-Croses, Beaune 1er Vignes-Franches
A larger/heavier bottle. Open, airy, nicely floral too – that’s a lovely nose. Round and nicely proportioned. Some density in the finish. Very well made, tasty wine – Very good.

2018 Jean-Luc & Paul Aergerter, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
A little more aromatic attack – dark fruited. Extra structure but with lots of depth to the darker fruit – not dense. A good finish. Very good again but for keeping a while.

2018 Bouchard Père et Fils, Beaune 1er Lers Avaux
Ooh – that’s attractive – a layer of higher-toned perfumed fruit and flowers – really elegant. Less sweet than the last wine but with a growing width of energetic fruit – more structured here too with a faint dryness to the tannin. This is very good, almost excellent wine – and I’d happily wait a while for it…

2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er Cru ‘Bastion
A more compact nose – a little timid – but at the base there’s good energy to this clean, darker, fruit. Concentrated whilst staying fresh, the flavour framed with a slightly drying grain of tannin – quite perfumed fruit. Structured so hold your horses – give this 3+ years in the cellar before returning. The finish mouth-watering beautifully – here with an extra suggestion of the stems… Yum!

2018 Rossignol-Trapet, Beaune 1er Teurons
A more modest colour. A nose of depth – a suggestion of coffee-oak, and redder fruit. More incisive than most – an obvious though not stark acidity. Mouth-watering through a little dry tannin in the finish – again with a little whole-cluster perfume in the finish. Lovely.

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Les Marconnets
Deeply coloured. Corked, no second bottle to try.

2018 Pierre Thibert, Beaune 1er Teurons
Returning to a more modest colour. Easy, red-fruited – not a full concentration of aroma. In the mouth, there’s more attack, a depth of red-fruit flavour too. This is rather good, layered, nicely concentrated flavour. That’s a lovely wine.

2018 François & Sylvie Gerbeaut, Beaune 1er Epenotes
Hmm, that’s a very concentrated, almost cordial nose – but with just enough freshness to keep interest. Vibrant in the mouth, cool, dark-fruited, tannin but with no grain. A good intensity if narrower finish. Very good.

2018 Bouchard Père et Fils, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Quite perfumed, the impression of a little stems but not overt. Deep, concentrated quite complex, a little rustic, perhaps due to a faint reduction below. But there’s concentration and tons of fine, balanced, flavour here – decant!

2018 Champy, Beaune 1er Aux Cras
Lots of colour to this wine. A slightly timid nose – but a lovely nose all the same – perfumed, with a nice clarity of fruit too. Here is a framework of structure, deeply flavoured, fresh not fat. The best part is the finish – very tasty.

2018 Seguin-Manuel, Beaune 1er Champs Pimonts
A little less colour. A modest reduction supporting a good red fruit. Silk, fresh, direct, cool fruit – yes a faint reduction but I like the definition and complexity of this wine – that’s very lovely – excellent wine.

2018 Château de Meursault, Beaune 1er Les Grèves ‘Les Trois Journaux
A nose that needs plenty of aeration – starting muddled but becoming more and more interesting with air – nice. Supple, very nicely textured – some oak flavour, red fruit. The oak is relatively high here – because of that I wouldn’t hesitate in waiting 4-5 years. The finish is good though oak-dominated today.

Afternoon session:

2018 François & Sylvie Gerbeaut, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
Plenty of colour – brightly yet darkly-red fruited. Mouth-filling, nicely structured and fresh, slightly drying from the tannin. I like the structure but you should keep this a little time before opening…

2018 Benoit Sordet, Beaune 1er Chouacheux
A much more timid nose – there’s freshness but little else. Lots of mouth-filling freshness and energy. Finishing long and nicely mouth-watering too – just a little dryness of tannin on the tip of the tongue as a reminder. Good wine.

2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er Les Marconnets
Darker with a deeper fruited nose – still fresh. Extra intensity here – darker-fruited attack to this flavour. Again with a good structure and lots of mouth-watering flavour too. Modest bitters in the finish – probably from the oak or stems, but neither are overt in the flavours. Excellent.

2018 Debavelaere, Beaune 1er Les Sceaux
That’s a nicely vibrant and dark-fruited nose – a good invitation. Really mouth-filling, quite juicy, a little zesty even. Long finishing, again with faint(er) bitters. Quite a pretty wine and a good wine to have in the cellar…

2018 Louis Latour, Beaune 1er Vignes-Franches
That’s a deep nose, meaty and complex, slightly reductive too. Lots of freshness but here’s a super middle and finishing flavour, always slowly melting – deliciously. That’s a really excellent wine!

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Toussaints
A more vertical nose – plenty of depth but less width – a concentrated red berry fruit at the core. Mouth-filling – that’s quite good – plenty of tannin – again darker fruit. Despite the freshness a bit more of 2018 about it – but it’s still delicious…

2018 Marchand-Tawse, Beaune 1er Clos du Roi
This starts a little deep and sullen but swirling really brings out some lovely fresh aromas. More red fruited, quite direct, faintly grained with tannin. There’s plenty of finishing flavour and concentration here. Very good.

2018 Jean Guiton, Beaune 1er Les Sizies
Violenty corked! The 4th so far, and replacement bottle to put things right.

2018 JC Boisset, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Pretty red fruit. Mouth-filling, red fruit accented with a whole-cluster perfume in the mouth. A modest grain of tannin then a long slow diminuendo of flavour. Really an excellent wine!

2018 Michel Gay, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Once more to the darker side with this fruit. Plenty of mouth-filling volume – the structure is evident here with some drying tannin. Wide with a nice finishing intensity. Another cellar candidate but good wine.

2018 Bouchard Aine, Beaune 1er Clos du Roi
A nose of freshness and higher tones – it’s a very nice invitation. Concentrated, very silky wine – the merest suggestion of a reduction but here is a fresh and concentrated wine and it has a great future. Simply excellent.

Fernand et Laurent Pillot, Beaune 1er Les Boucherottes
Not a full-power nose but still a lovely nose – perfumed and very inviting. Wide, a small grain of tannin in the texture and a certain salinity to the flavour too. Long, slightly oaked but very fine. That’s another excellent wine.

2018 Château de Santenay, Beaune 1er Clos du Roi
Here’s a concentrated, darker, nose – some energy here too. Bright, energetic, really mouth-filling. There’s a grain of tannin that adheres to my mouth. The major part of the finish subsides quickly but the fainter last notes last very well. Good wine.

2018 Edouard Delauney, Beaune 1er Les Epenotes
Plenty of aromatic freshness here, even a small hint of menthol – it’s a very attractive nose. Large-scaled and energetic in the mouth – the slightly dry grain of tannin once more. Wide and slowly mouth-watering through the finishing dryness. Very good.

2018 Jean-Luc & Paul Aergerter, Beaune 1er Belissand
A deeper and darker nose. Bright and fresh – a nice attack to redder fruit than the nose at first suggested. Very easy and tasty over the palate. There’s depth to this flavour too – a good wine.

2018 Louis Jadot, Beaune 1er Célébration
A good depth of red fruit and a faintly woody aroma – with aeration some attractive perfume is also visible. Fresh, slightly astringent starting, the slowly flavour fades – faster than the astringence! A structural wine that I appreciate more and more the longer it stays in my glass – it will be much, much better with patience – certainly excellent but give it 5+ years!

2018 Marchand-Tawse, Beaune 1er Les Teurons
A rounder nose, still with lots of depth. Supple, wide-flavoured – super energy and an impression of some whole-cluster perfume too. Long and perfumed in the finish. A simply excellent wine….

2018 Yves Girardin, Beaune 1er Vignes-Franches
Here’s another deep nose of darker fruit. Lots of volume and freshness to this wine, less drying tannin than many – the finish is delicious and mouth-watering. That’s another really excellent wine.

2018 Edouard Delauney, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
That’s a very pretty nose – it’s not particularly wide but it’s very attractively perfumed. Really mouth-filling. I love the energy and the rolling, almost juicyiness of the mouthwatering finish. Again, excellent wine.

2018 Denis Carré, Beaune 1er Tivilains
Wide and vibrant – a nose of clarity – that’s lovely. In the mouth there’s a reduction in the flavour, lots of volume and a drying aspect to the tannin. Long – a lovely finish here. Very good.

2018 Joseph Drouhin, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
A smaller, tighter nose. Supple and concentrated. Both wide and and long – that’s a very lovely wine – I’d keep it some time, but this is very good, indeed excellent with a little patience.

2018 Tollot-Beaut, Beaune 1er Clos du Roi
Another rather nice nose of fresh, darker-red, fruit – a good invitation. This sits well in the mouth, easy over the palate but with good concentration, nicely long. Yum!

2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Here’s a good nose – perfumed – a little whole-cluster in the mix. Lots of mouth-filling flavour and energy too. Wide waves of finishing flavour here – that’s good flavour too – very good wine.

2018 Château de Meursault, Beaune 1er Cent Vignes
A little less aromatic attack here but, all the same, with a lovely perfume. A grain to the tannin here but less associated dryness than many this afternoon. Nicely intense, long-finishing. Another very good wine.

2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
Lots of aromatic complexity here – wide, modestly whole-cluster perfumed. Supple, concentrated, with lots of energy too. That’s long, complex and perfumed finishing too. That’s a great wine…
2018 Clos la Chapelle, Beaune 1er Champs Pimont
That’s another very pretty nose – narrower but also more elegantly perfumed. Full, concentrated – wide waves of flavour over the palate. Sustaining a great length of finish. That’s two great wines in a row!

2018 Châteaud de Meursault Beaune 1er Toussaints
Less intensity of aroma here – a good width and interesting – indeed inviting. Supple, mouth-filling with good freshness to the flavour. A modest dryness of tannin in the finish but with a length of tasty flavour to balance. Very good.

2018 Meurgey-Croses, Beaune 1er ‘Valières
A modest volume of aroma – but another wine with a lovely, inviting, perfume. Quite a supple concentration again, but finishing in a fine and layered style – that’s very lovely. Super wine…

2018 Philippe & Arnaud Dubreuil, Beaune 1er En Genêt
An extra volume of higher tones from this nose – super. More grain to this tannin but there’s more intensity showing here too. Long, grainy but tasty finishing. Very good wine.

2018 Château de Meursault, Beaune 1er Les Teurons
Here’s a nice depth of darker, faintly spiced aroma. Mouth-filling really energetically flavoured too. Wide, slightly graphite-style finishing minerality – cru Beaujolais style. Very good.

2018 Tollot-Beaut, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
That’s another deep nose but with a vibrant higher perfume too. Round, silky, supple-textured wine. A little extra floral perfume in the finishing flavours too. That’s a long and very tasty wine. Excellent.

2018 Pierre Bourée, Beaune 1er Epenotes
Plenty of colour. Less weight of aroma but there’s a certain elegance on display – nice. Vibrant and growing in intensity. A little herb complexity here and long finishing – the grain of tannin is very fine with almost no drying aspect. That’s a very good wine.

2018 Les Héritiers Saint-Genys, Beaune 1er Les Cent Vignes
Ooh – more floral and more openly fruit-forward – particularly attractive aromas here. Fresh, mouth-filling, vibrantly flavoured wine – a little impression of bitters from the barrels, but this is clearly excellent wine. Yum!

2018 Château de Meursault, Beaune 1er Les Grèves
Here’s a pretty nose – a clarity of darker fruit and nice freshness too. Mouth-filling again – this wine really has plenty of volume. Fresh, wide layers of good flavour in the finish – a dry grain but not harshly dry in the finishing flavours. Very good wine.

2018 des Croix, Beaune 1er Bressandes
A different nose – ripe but fresh – but also deep and darkly fruited – pure fruit. I have the impression of some whole-cluster in the mix here – but it’s far from overt. Easy, beautifully melting with flavour over the palate. That’s an excellent wine – lacy, elegant but taken to the next level with a steely backbone. Bravo.

2018 Sebastien Magnien, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
Fresh, wide with dark-red fruit aromas. Fresh in the mouth too, a little less sweet than many but vibrantly fruited. There’s super clarity and energy to this flavour – the finish is of modest intensity but not modest length. Excellent, perhaps the potential for more…

2018 Faiveley, Beaune 1er Clos de l’Ecu
Very reductive – then corked too. No second sample to test.

clos de la Chapelle, Beaune 1er Teurons
Deep aromatics – of some width too, though not much is visible higher up. Supple concentration – wide layers of flavour, slowly melting over the palate. Long finishing, like the last with modest intensity today. I’d say that’s another excellent wine.

2018 Ardhuy, Beaune 1er Champs Pimont
Translucent, medium colour. Plenty of aromatic impact though – faintly reductive but with lots of inviting complexity too. Fine texture – growing in both volume and intensity in the mouth. Super energy in the middle and a little proper structure too as you head into the finish. Super wine.

2018 Michel Rebourgeon, Beaune 1er Chouacheux
Another more vertical nose – plenty of depth here. Mouth-filling shape – lots of structure – drying tannin framing the flavour. A width of fresh flavour in the finish – hold well with some bitters. Good, possibly very good wine…

2018 Bouchard Père et Fils, Beaune 1er Les Teurons
Plenty of colour again. A fresh nose that adds to its perfume with swirling. Open, indeed wide-flavoured – the structure is here too but much less drying – and it’s quite a perfumed, probably a little whole-cluster contributing. Another very good wine, almost excellent.

2018 Joseph Drouhin, Beaune 1er Aux Cras
Lots of darker-fruited depth to this nose. Completely mouth-filling. Red fruit in the mouth – more berry than cherry to start. The structural tannin only showing as you head into the finish. Modestly intense but still with good length here. Easier but very good wine again…

Les Blancs

Listed in tasting order:

2018 Sebastien Magnien, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
Freshness plus a cushion of oak. A grain of tannin. Here I find a mineral wine, a wine with a width of easy fruit – it’s the finish where I find a bit more interest and class, here it’s excellent – before that tasty but a bit anonymous…

2018 du Pavillon, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
DIAM-30 seal.
Fresh, cool, direct aromatics. Here I find a more mineral wine, more complexity too. Nicely mouth-watering in the finish. This is showing a little compact but it’s certainly very good. It’s not showing enough for more today but I think a wine for keeping and with excellent prospects.

2018 Louis Latour, Beaune 1er Aux Cras
Deep, complex – a suggestion of oak too but of an intensity that brings complexity rather than dominance. Here a little reductive extra in the flavours – mineral too. Mouth-watering in a nicely zesty finish. That’s another very good wine…

2018 Jean-Luc & Paul Aergerter, Beaune 1er Les Reversées
More ripeness of fresh fruit – great depth of aroma too. Fine attack, again a small suggestion of reduction but here is a wine of mineral base and impressive complexity – long. That’s clearly an excellent wine.

2018 Ardhuy, Beaune 1er ‘Petit Clos Blanc des Theurons
A nice aromatic complexity – that’s very attractive. Supple, depth of flavour and good texture – a riper, almost golden, impression to this fruit – ripe pineapple – but without detriment to the energy. That’s very good wine.

2018 Joseph Drouhin, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
A very good nose – wide and a little perfumed – accented with the barrel. Bright, fresh attack with an insinuating intensity. Long and tasty and no trace of the oak in this modestly long but delicious finish. A lovely wine.

2018 JC Boisset, Beaune 1er Les Vignes Franches
Good aromatic freshness here – not of density nor of oak, just a nice invitation. Mineral at the base, mouth-watering – that’s another tasty wine with a good personality. Very good again.

2018 Albert Morot, Beaune 1er Les Aigrots
A nicely wide and easy freshness to this nose – it’s attractive. In the mouth a good blend of energy, minerality and a ripeness of citrus-style fruit. Slowly mouth-watering, tasty wine. It’s good…

2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
Diam-style seal.
A reductive note in the depth of this aroma – but with good shape and freshness to the nose. The reduction is stronger on the palate but again the shape and construction, the minerality, of this wine is very good. Carafe – potentially a very good wine.

2018 Michel Gay, Beaune 1er Choucherias
An easy width of ripe but fresh fruit aroma. The most intense wine so far – again with a small reduction in the flavours. Direct, more lime-style, mouth-watering fruit. The finish is very tasty too. Very good…

2018 Benoit Sordet, Beaune 1er Chouacheux
That’s a little different – deep, clean, ripe but with good fresh cut. Direct and very fresh. Mouth-watering in style. Clearly, a wine harvested quite early but also a wine with a definite personality and impressive length. Not a great wine but very good in the context of many anonymous wines.

2018 Françoise André, Beaune 1er Belissand
A little more depth and interest to this riper fruit aroma. Concentrated, supple – layered flavour – impressive weight but the energy needed to fully balance is marginally more than the wine is showing today. Delicious and long with a stony-fruit core. A bit more energy and it would easily be excellent wine – as the mass of fruit fades, maybe you will have that.

2018 Bouchard Aine, Beaune 1er Marconnets
A more compact but slightly perfumed nose. Here is a more direct flavour with plenty of acidity and an almost citrus-skin bitterness. Lots of finishing density. With time it may also become delicious – but not yet today.

2018 Clos de la Chapelle, Beaune 1er Reversées
Here’s a nice fresh fruit with energy – that’s a good invitation to drink despite a kernel of reduction. Mouth-filling and vibrant – that’s the best wine by far, so far. Melting with flavour, a base of minerality, slightly accented with salinity but also deeply flavoured and long. Delicious and I’d go as far as to say – bravo!

2018 Seguin-Manuel, Beaune 1er Clos des Mouches
Airy yet deeply fruited at the same time. Hmm, practically as good as the last – wide – mouth-filling, plenty of energy, plenty of complexity too. The finish long, slow and mouth watering. Not quite a ‘bravo’ wine but certainly excellent…

2018 Chanson, Beaune 1er ‘Bastion
DIAM-style seal
A tight depth of concentration covered with an easier more airy impression. A little reductive flavour, possibly with minerlaity mixed up in that too. The finish is mouth-watering and tasty – clearly the best part of this wine – hopefully it will come together, if so, it will be very good…

2018 Bouchard Père, Beaune 1er ‘du Château
Probably the most perfumed width of any of these whites – it could have more aromatic energy though. Direct with good flavour energy and plenty of minerality. Another white where the finish is the best part – in this case though it’s the only place where the flavour of the barrel is obvious. Potentially a very good wine but I’d hold a couple of years for that.

2018 Château de Meursault, Beaune 1er Blanches Fleurs
A smaller nose but there’s a perfumed ripeness of yellow citrus. Plenty of tannic grain in support. Concentrated, ripe fruit on the palate but with balancing energy. The finish has a more mineral impression, faintly saline accented too. That’s a nice wine – very good.

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